Little can rival the sense of exhilaration and peace brought by the jump from a boat into the ocean. Every time you cross from one universe to another, magic occurs. All the troubles and worries of the world are behind you: they’re left on the boat and it’s just you, the ocean and your thoughts.
If you love scuba diving just like I do, you know precisely what I’m talking about. For watersports’ fans, the “other” universe is water. If you’re snowboarding down cliffs, the “other” universe is the abyss. If you’re skydiving, the “other” universe is the sky.
Why are some of us attracted to extreme sports while others are not?
Are there any parallels between extreme sports and business?
And if so, what are some of the success principles that you can apply to strengthen your mental game and achieve breakthroughs in business and life?
I’m fascinated about extreme sports — especially watersports because it takes a certain quality to practice these sports. It requires mental toughness.
Whether you’re a Navy SEALs, a freediving champion or you’re simply scuba diving for leisure, you have to be mentally strong.
“The mental toughness and the heart are a lot stronger than some of the physical advantages you might have. I’ve always said that and I’ve always believed that.” – Michael Jordan
It’s not about better genetics.
It’s not about physicality.
The secret lies in the mind.
In a world full of softies and victims, cultivating mental resilience, developing skills and habits to increase your mental strength is the best way to set yourself up for success.
After more than 10 years of scuba diving, I’ve distilled 7 effective principles that you can take and apply right away to achieve breakthroughs in your business, professional career and life.
Principle #1: Trust Thyself
„All power is from within and therefore under our control.“ ~ Robert Collier
Invest time into getting to know yourself better.
Once you understand your behavioral patterns and the disempowering beliefs that are sabotaging and stopping you from achieving great things in life, you can change your programming.
Learn to quiet the inner chatter that is constantly seeking new, dangerous and mostly fearful adventures. Learn to relax your mind and trust your instincts.
Principle #2: Decide Fast And Take Action Immediately
“Anytime you have difficulty making an important decision, you can be sure that it’s the result of being unclear about your values.” ~ Tony Robbins
Decision is the ultimate power.
Those who can’t or don’t want to decide, get stuck. They remain trapped in the treadmill while the blurry fog of their mind tells them all the reasons why a decision will cause lots of pain and ultimately, lead to disaster.
Not all your decisions are going to be popular. There will always be people who disagree with you and consider the decisions you have taken foolish or stupid.
Trade being liked for being respected.
Decision is the first piece in this puzzle. The next important one is action. You won’t achieve anything if you take a decision but afterwards get a comfortable seat on the couch. You need to go right to the implementation phase. Once you have decided, take immediate action.
Remember, you can always course-correct along the way.
Principle #3: Be Prepared To Say No And Walk Away
“A lot of people are afraid to tell the truth, to say no. That’s where toughness comes into play. Toughness is not being a bully. It’s having backbone.” ~ Robert Kiyosaki
NO is a powerful word. It is by far one of the most powerful words in sales.
Don’t be afraid to walk away from deals and people who don’t have the best intentions in mind. Go back to principle #1, check your instincts and if something isn’t quite right, get up and walk away.
Far too many people say yes to shady deals because they “need” the money. To find themselves afterwards fighting with clients who don’t share the same values they do and wasting precious time and resources to fix something that was never good to begin with.
Respect yourself. If you don’t do it, no one else will.
Principle #4: Develop Success Habits And Empowering Beliefs
“Successful people are simply those with success habits.” ~ Brian Tracy
During all my years in business and sports, I was fortunate enough to have met and befriended many highly successful businessmen (-women) and athletes.
What impressed me most about these people was their ability to squeeze in so many high-level tasks into a single day. Their level of effectiveness and productivity was consistently high regardless of difficulty and required skillset.
Numerous books and articles have been written about the habits of highly successful entrepreneurs. And to this day, no other topic seems to fascinate start-ups and entrepreneurs from all over the world more than studying the habits of highly effective people.
Principle #5: Commit To Continuous Improvement
“The true voyage of discovery consists not in seeking new landscapes, but in seeing the same landscape with new eyes.” ~ Marcel Proust
A lot of people settle for average or mediocre. Successful people on the other hand, reject mediocrity in all parts of their lives. They refuse to settle for good and choose instead to be great.
In today’s fast-paced technology-driven world, constant improvement is no longer a choice. It is a prerequisite to survive. For those who want to thrive, as successful people do, never-ending improvement has become a must.
If you’re an entrepreneur you might want to improve your sales and negotiation skills. If you’re a coach, you might want to improve your communication skills. If you’re into sports, you might want to improve your health and fitness, or perhaps change diets to reduce cholesterol and triglycerides.
Principle #6: Master The Fundamentals
“Success is neither magical nor mysterious. Success is the natural consequence of consistently applying the basic fundamentals.” ~ Jim Rohn
The first thing I always tell my clients is to master the fundamentals.
I don’t care what business you’re in; if you don’t master the fundamentals, you’re not going to make it. Yes, you might experience some short-term gains without having a solid foundation, but long-term you’re going to struggle.
Principle #7: Focus On What You Want
“The successful warrior is the average man, with laser-like focus.” ~ Bruce Lee
Most people spend their valuable lives focusing on what they don’t want, ending up with more of that which they didn’t desire in the first place. The more they complain about something, the more they attract it into their lives.
The first step towards success is to become crystal clear about what it is that you truly want.
Grab a pen and paper and spend some time thinking and writing down what it is that you really want in this life. You’ve got ONE shot. You only live once. Make it count.
Nothing Happens Unless…
I truly mean that. There is no magic button we can press that would transfer mental strength to all of us. We have to put in the work. I have to put in the work, and so do you.
You can meditate until you get blue in the face. You can read as many blogs, books and articles about developing mental toughness, as you want. If you don’t do it, if you don’t apply what you’ve learned, nothing happens.
“Knowledge is only potential power. It becomes power only when, and if, it is organized into definite plans of action, and directed to a definite end.” – Napoleon Hill
I’ll leave you with this: you know you have improved your mental stamina when you stop craving attention in this world and start doing the things that bring meaning to your life.
That’s it. All that’s left is to apply.
Thanks so much for reading! If you enjoyed what I’ve shared with you, check out this book in which I’ve highlighted several practical tips and techniques to make it easier for you to increase your mental toughness.